BRIEF MESSAGES & LETTERS, 2001 - Present
Staunch Proletarian Internationalists and Anti-imperialist Fighters
August 1, 2002
In the period of 1989 to 1991, the crisis of the world capitalist system was already severe. It struck hard at the retrogressive countries where modern revisionists had betrayed socialism and pushed the restoration of capitalism. This brought about the turmoil in China, the fall of revisionist regimes in the Soviet bloc and the disintegration of the Soviet Union.
The economic bubble in Japan burst and began a long period of recession and stagnation. Germany and most of Europe likewise fell into a similar morass. The United States and its imperialist allies launched a war of aggression against Iraq as an unwieldy client state.
The US cleverly misrepresented the global situation as one of capitalism permanently defeating socialism, the irresistible advance of imperialist globalization under the neoliberal anachronism of "free market" and the making of a new world order completely in the stranglehold of a single unchallengeable hyperpower.
In the wake of the turbulent period of 1989-91, we the Filipino revolutionaries and progressives established direct and close relations with William Hinton, Joan Hinton and Erwin "Sid" Engst and have cooperated with them in major initiatives to struggle against the imperialist ideological and political offensive against the cause of national liberation, democracy and socialism.
We appreciated highly Bill Hinton’s book The Great Reversal: The Privatization of China, 1978-1989 and related articles appearing in the Monthly Review. We also admired his condemnation of Deng Xiaoping’s deceptive and brutal handling of the mass protests on June 4, 1989.
As chairperson of the international committee to celebrate the 100th birth anniversary of Mao Zedong with a seminar on Mao Zedong Thought in Germany, I invited Bill Hinton and other close friends of his to contribute papers to the seminar. They made important contributions that raised the quality of the seminar to a high level in defense of socialism and against imperialism and modern revisionism.
Bill, Joan and Sid were among the outstanding individuals who signed the Declaration on Mao Zedong Thought. This declaration reaffirmed as Mao’s greatest achievement the theory and practice of continuing revolution under proletarian dictatorship to combat revisionism, prevent the restoration of capitalism and consolidate socialism.
In 1996, Bill and Joan went to the Philippines to participate in the People’s Campaign Against Imperialist Globalization and People’s Caravan Against the APEC. They contributed to clarifying the issues and setting the line of march against imperialism. They became an active part of a historic event that signaled the chain of mass protests in various capitals of the world in subsequent years against US imperialism and such agencies as the IMF, World Bank and WTO.
They became acquainted with the growing mass movement for national and social liberation in the Philippines and came to know Filipino mass leaders and activists. They came at a time that the victory of the Second Great Rectification Movement was evident and resounding in the revitalized mass movement.
When Joan and Sid came to visit us in Utrecht in 1998, we felt their warm comradeship. We learned so much from their rich store of knowledge and experience. We enjoyed exchanging views and information on Chinese history, the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution and the current situation in China and the world. We recalled the great comradeship between Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai and the glorious history of the Chinese Communist Party until the revisionists headed by Deng Xiaoping gained dominance.
We wanted Bill to be the main speaker in an international conference to celebrate in The Hague the 50th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China in 1999 but he had prior commitments. Further, we wanted him to be a major speaker on the struggle for national and social liberation at the founding assembly of the International League of Peoples Struggle held in Zutphen, Netherlands. But his health problem prevented him from coming.
Bill, Joan and Sid are respectively Han Ding, Han Chun and Yang Zao to the Chinese people whom they love and to whom they have dedicated their lives. They are in turn deeply loved by the Chinese people. What they have done in the service of the Chinese people is as well in the service of the rest of mankind. They bear witness to the progressive goodness and correctness of the socialist revolution and construction against the evils of the semicolonial and semifeudal past and the retrogression to capitalism.
They have criticized and condemned the revisionist betrayal of socialism and the all-round degeneration of China as a result of the restoration of capitalism. They are keenly and happily aware of the growing resistance of the Chinese workers and peasants and the efforts of genuine communists to reestablish the revolutionary party of the proletariat and to carry forward the Chinese revolution.
Bill, Joan and Sid are staunch proletarian internationalists and anti-imperialist fighters. They have disdained opportunities for personal advancement in the wealthiest and most powerful country and have worked hard to make important contributions to socialist revolution and construction in China. They contributed significantly to the development of Chinese agriculture by working closely with the peasants, supporting land reform and promoting cooperation and mechanization.
Since the late 1960s, Bill’s book Fanshen and his subsequent writings have had significant influence among Filipino comrades and progressive intellectuals. Being in an agrarian country, they were attracted to Fanshen because it was about land reform and how this had been carried out in stages democratically and successfully. They also admired the author for having courageously fought legal battles for so long to recover his voluminous notes from the witch hunters in the US for the purpose of writing the book.
Consequently, so many Filipinos have become aware of the hard productive work on the ground done by him, Joan and Sid and their active participation in the class struggle to advance socialism. We have been inspired by them and felt close to them even before we could interface with any of them.
We have learned important lessons from them in analyzing and dealing with problems in a country liberated from semicolonial and semifeudal conditions, striving to carry forward socialist revolution and construction and combating imperialism, revisionism and reaction.
Our relations with Bill, Joan and Sid have been warmhearted, enlightening and fruitful. Our bonds are those of proletarian internationalism and anti-imperialist solidarity. These are acutely needed in the face of the overweening arrogance, the ideological and political offensive and large-scale terrorism of the imperialists.
Now, we see the US itself reeling from the crisis of overproduction and financial meltdowns. The high-tech bubble has burst and the so-called new economy has lost its gloss. The Bush regime is resorting to war hysteria under the pretext of anti-terrorism, intensify military production and engage in military aggression and intervention in a desperate attempt to "solve" the crisis.
The resurgence of the anti-imperialist and socialist movements on a global scale comes right on time as a result of the objective conditions of exceedingly severe crisis and the indomitable spirit and persevering struggles of the organized masses and genuine proletarian revolutionary fighters.
In concluding, Julie and I join all of you in
conveying to Bill, Joan and Sid our congratulations for their
outstanding achievements. They have won more than enough and
these are inscribed for posterity in the hearts and minds of the
Chinese, American, Filipino and other peoples of the world. We
wish all our three comrades a long, long life. We wish them to
score further achievements in the service of the people in the
revolutionary struggle to advance the socialist cause and defeat
imperialism. Thank you. #